torsdag 12. august 2021

UK and US send troops to Afghanistan as Taliban advances

The US and UK are scrambling reinforcements to Kabul to help evacuate their diplomats, soldiers and citizens as well as thousands of Afghans who have worked with them, as the Taliban advance towards the capital. The Pentagon announced it would send three battalions, about 3,000 soldiers, to Kabul’s international airport within 24 hours of the announcement on Thursday. The defence department spokesman, John Kirby, said the reinforcements would help the “safe and orderly reduction” of numbers of US nationals and Afghans who worked with the Americans and consequently had been granted special immigrant visas.

Kirby described the move as the “prudent thing to do ... given the rapidly deteriorating security situation”. He added: “Commanders on the ground will be working with the state department to determine what’s most needed.” The UK said it would send 600 troops, and the defence secretary, Ben Wallace, said Britain was relocating its embassy from the outskirts of the secure Green Zone to a potentially safer location closer to the centre of the capital.